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Every year it comes way too fast! We plan, shop, bake, clean, decorate, and (hopefully) throw festive parties. But no matter how early we start, Christmas Day seems to sneak up and catch us by surprise. Do not get us wrong! We love the day, but always have more we wish we could fit into the season.

Today we bring you some great last minute ideas in case, like us, you decide to throw a last minute Christmas party for the friends you haven’t had enough time to see this season. Some parties take weeks of planning and preparation, but sometimes last minute get-togethers are the most memorable and enjoyable. Believe us, you do not need to stress to have a great party. Just make sure to strategically plan and you will end up enjoying the evening.

Food

Many feel it is a faux pas to have friends bring a part of the meal. Christmas is a time to be together and enjoy company. Oranges on pedestalIf friends offer to bring a dish to the party, accept their offer! (Make sure to have some ideas written down so you are able to offer a suggestion that will fit with the rest of the meal.)

Keep the meal simple and carefree. For a last minute meal, have the food set up buffet style. Buffets may not always be popular, but try spicing up your presentation with a selection of festive additions. Create an elegant look by using some fun displays: oranges on a glass pedestal, napkins in rows, and even fun serving dishes. A buffet never needs to lack style and class.

Drinks

Drinks can set the tone for any event. Drinks in bowlHave options readily available for your guests as they arrive. For your guests’ convenience, have bottles iced. Try a sampling of wines, champagnes, and juices. A great way to display and keep your drink selection chilled is to use a large punch bowl. You may not have time to make a great eggnog or punch, but there certainly is time to fill a punch bowl with ice and stock it with options!  Additionally, have the serving glasses lined up and ready to use!

Dessert

This is where all the baking we have done recently comes in handy! Last minute parties are the perfect times to stack cake plates full of your Christmas goodies. If you have many baked options, sort them on different plates.  Table(s) should be set so that guests desiring to sit will know it is acceptable. Finally, have your rooms appropriately lit and cleared for people to mingle.

Need some baking ideas? Check out our step-by-step recipes.

A Christmas party is remembered not just for the presentation of the evening but for the gracious host. Aim to foster a wonderful evening full of great conversation and Christmas spirit. Use what you have and keep things light. Let friends and family help by accepting offers to bring a dish or two. By keeping the party relaxed and carefree, you will set the tone for an enjoyable evening!

-Merry Christmas!

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